July 1, 2009 5:18:18 pm
In the first conviction ten months after riots rocked the Kandhamal district,a tribal leader has been sentenced to two years’ imprisonment by a local court in Phulbani on charge of setting ablaze a house of a man belonging to a minority community.
Chakradhar Mallick of Dampidhia village had set the house of one Loknath Digal of the same village on fire during the communal riots that broke out in the aftermath of the VHP leader Laxmananda Saraswati’s killing on August 23,2008.
Besides,fast track court-II judge Chittaranjan Dash,also the additional sessions judge,imposed a fine of Rs 1,000 on Mallick while delivering the judgement yesterday.
The court had earlier acquitted three persons.
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Mallick,a tribal leader,was also accused of instigating people in the village to set afire the houses of the minority community.
The district witnessed large scale violence for two months. The riots claimed at least 43 lives and at least 4,600 houses,over 150 churches and prayer houses were set on fire.
As many as 700 cases were filed in different police stations while police arrested about 1,000 people in connection with the riots.
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